Time for a Sanity Check

World-3I just ran across a “political map” entitled “The World According to the United States of America.”

If you are an American, I think this map might serve as an interesting test of how secure you are in your beliefs and in your self-esteem. If you are a citizen of another country, this map may show something else entirely.

Before reading further, I would like you to click on the image so you can examine the enlarged version. After you have read all of the captions, take note of your emotions.

In an effort to find the original source of this map, I Googled the phrase, The World According to the United States of America. It appears that this map has been around for more than a year. I was unable to track it down to an original source, but I discovered a wide range of reactions to this map.

About thirty percent took this map seriously as unwarranted America bashing.

Another forty percent took this map seriously as a well-deserved summation of America’s efforts at world domination.

About ten percent, including my old alma mater, the University of Massachusetts, treated this map as a subject deserving of study.

The remaining 20 percent, which included people from all countries, saw this as a subject for laughter. In my opinion, this satirical view of the way the US views the world is both humorous and, unfortunately for our self-esteem, not too far off the mark.

If you feel that this map unfairly categorizes americans as parochial retards, I’m sorry for you. It’s only a cartoon map and if you can even begin to consider that this clever scrawl can invalidate the accomplishments of millions of hard-working Americans, you have a serious self-image problem.

Lighten up, people. You will live longer!

When we can’t laugh at our national propensity for viewing the world from a homeboy viewpoint, we are in serious danger of losing it altogether.

I know that most Americans I have met, including myself, have much less geographical knowledge than the the few people I have met from other countries. It probably stems from the fact that we can drive for 10,000 miles and barely trace our borders. On other continents, you can cross several countries in a day.

If you think the author of this map was way off base, I suggest the following. Try and add additional national products to those which are humorously depicted on this map.

I welcome your comments.

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0 Responses to Time for a Sanity Check

  1. David
    I think the map is hilarious!!! A sense of humour is needed in these times. And there is a hint of truth in some of it. Hey, world domination can be rough…not everybody will see the humour in it. Nice find, David. I would love to add a few things to the map, especially in the Canada section. smile. gale

  2. David says:

    I would love to see an interactive version of this map so we could add things the author left out.

  3. Pam says:

    Dr. Dave;

    I think it’s hilarious; this how I believe most Americans view the world, or this is their concept of Geography – how great Zena made it onto the Globe! I’m sure for many it’ll fit into the non-P.C. category.
    Thanks for help on the “lost windows”.


  4. Tony Goodson says:

    Great Map. I’m a Brit, now residing in Melbourne, Australia (where the Kangaroos are), and I had a chat with a 41 year old guy living in Arizona, from New York, Long Island, and has also lived in Hawaii. He didn’t know that the last Olympic Games were in Sydney. He didn’t care. Another American I checked this out with said
    “While I’m sure it’s very important for the athletes, the support staff, and those attending in person, the TV audience couldn’t care less, and why should they?” I am amazed. I need to check this out with other non-Americans, but I’m sure most of them know where summer Olympic Games are held.
    The map paints a thousand words, and makes you wonder just who is running American Foreign Policy!!

  5. Zoë C says:

    LOL, lolololol , i luv stuff like this.


    not quite the same but that makes me laugh everytime i see it.

    I understand the map. Id like to do an English version lol. I could write one for every country and although most would see the joke there would always be someone who didnt like it. I wouldnt be that person tho *chuckles*

  6. wendy says:

    I saw this last year sometime – a British friend sent it to me …. I think it pertains to US foreign policy mainly. Its really interesting to see it posted – and to read the reaction to it. As a Canadian I feel somewhat awkward posting a comment on it (I started to leave one earlier, deleted and decided to come back)

  7. David says:

    I’m glad you returned. Your comments are valued.

    I’m not so sure this map pertains to US foreign policy as much as to the mindset of many US natives. After all, I think our government knows there is more to Canada than moose and hockey. (At least I hope so!)

    It’s the rest of us who have to squint and ponder on what you Canadians actually DO up there. 🙂
    As with anything else, more communication, rather than less, is the best answer.

  8. ChefQuix says:

    At this time we’re too busy shoveling snow and wearing large amounts of clothes to really care whats’s going on in the rest of the world… Nah I’m just kidding, now that we have the internet one can’t escape the world events. I’d say that us Canadians spend most of our time trying to figure out exactly how we’re different that our American neighbours, and then bitching to each other about how we’re never noticed in the international spotlight. Such is our fate, ah well. 😉

  9. Barbara Matthews says:

    I came across this map today. I guess, I was bored and was trying to Google British vs American humor. That was a bust…Yeah, we laugh at different junk, but the map, was funny. In fact the funniest thing I’ve seen in a while. So who’s hating it? Maybe they should put some gas in there big old’ SUV and go somewhere. Maybe take a day-trip to Canada. 

    I have what most of my friend call a bizarre since of humor, I am quite cynical and very self deprecating (but in a good way—ain’t nothin’ wrong with my self esteem. Spelling and grammar is another story.)

    TITLE: I am Canadian! How I spent the last ten minutes
    URL: http://www.canuckflack.com/000598.html
    BLOG NAME: Canuckflack
    DATE: 01/09/2004 12:42:46 PM
    First I went to Bloglines, to look over my blogroll. Then I jumped to Dana’s Blog, who pointed me to a new marketing blog called What’s Your Brand Mantra? Browsing through her blog, I noted this entry about a map…
    TITLE: Self-Deprecating Humor
    URL: http://brand.blogs.com/mantra/2004/01/selfdeprecating.html
    BLOG NAME: What’s Your Brand Mantra?
    DATE: 01/04/2004 07:05:54 PM
    Visit David St. Lawrence’s blog and click on the thumbnail pic of “The World According to the United States of America.” I happen to fall in the mere 20% of map viewers who burst out laughing. Hope you have a

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